Not a Calif thing as much as a Region Air Board thing. Since there is a normal air pattern blowing west to east and for likely other reasons much of the bay area can paint using "more harmful" products than those to the east of those areas.
Be happy - eventually your area will change also
I didn't know it was regional. I thought it was all of Kali.
I'm in the South Coast AQMD (SoCal) area where they limited the amount of VOC's and why all the paint shops down here had to switch to water base. The shop I went to said he had to dispose of $40k worth of paints. tints and reducers. He also had to retrofit his spray booth, and buy all new materials. Then a few years later, the HVLP guns came out and could get under the SCAQMD VOC restriction and he chose to switch back. I guess I'm lucky he did 'cause most shops stayed with the water base stuff because they already invested in new product, booth upgrades (or new) and training their painters how to shoot it.
Let's hope that the AQMD's don't decide to make it even more restrictive to drive out the solvent based paints. They are by far a better product.